About the Journey Co-Leaders
The primary charge of the Journey’s Co-Leaders is to consult and recommend strategies and practices to the Chancellor that reduce or eliminate racial inequities, create equitable opportunities and outcomes at UNL, and promote inclusive excellence in higher education. The Journey Co-Leaders will also undertake special projects and initiatives that will advance UNL’s anti-racism efforts.
To achieve this aim, the co-leaders will:
Engage and Advise Chancellor Green and University Leaders
The Journey Co-Leaders function in an advisory capacity to the Chancellor, allowing them to be a supportive mechanism and forum where anti-racism practices and considerations can be discussed with candor and sincerity. The goal of guiding leadership toward an anti-racist present and future begins with the acknowledgement of the ancestral, present, and future Tribal homelands upon which the institution exists. The Co-Leaders recognize the Otoe-Missouria, Pawnee, Ponca, Omaha, Winnebago, Kansas, Ioway, Sac and Fox, Cheyenne, Lakota, Arapaho, Dakota Nations within and beyond the state of Nebraska as the original stewards of the land and respect with great value those relationships. As routine advisers to Chancellor Green, the Co-Leaders facilitate the necessary conversations and structures to ensure that Black, Native American/Indigenous, people of color, and intersectional identities and perspectives are heard and incorporated in the University’s transformation to an anti-racist institution.
Identify Systemic Issues and Institutional Strategies
The Co-Leaders set an annual agenda that will entail strategic efforts around anti-racism at UNL, specific projects and a readiness to identify and assess issues around racism on the campus as they emerge. In addition to institutional leadership, Co-Leaders meet with councils and committees, organizations, centers, offices, colleges, and departments, in addition to local and state community stakeholders, to identify opportunities for the University to either leverage and support local and institutional expertise and programs, or pursue new endeavors.
Serve as a Resource and Inform Practice
The Co-Leaders are a source for raising critical consciousness and ensuring scrutiny of racism on our campus. The Co-Leaders draw not only upon relevant theoretical and philosophical frames, substantive analyses, and empirical data, but also upon crucial praxes and practices. The work of the Co-Leaders will include constantly-changing efforts that will arise on a regular basis, while assessing institutional practices, policies, and data to identify institutional barriers to and opportunities for racial equity. The Journey Co-Leaders function on the principle that its work is to offer direction to university entities to make use of their resources to ensure anti-racist structures on campus. The Co-Leaders will balance their role as experts to offer recommendations to campus entities, with their ability to call for action and change among such entities depending on what is needed.
Special Notes about the Journey
- The Co-Leaders center the journey to address the history of racism both prior to 1862 and throughout its existence, and to leave an institutional imprint of what has occurred around racism and how the university has dealt with it.
- The Journey Co-Leader team is an initiative of the Chancellor’s Office, but is jointly connected, for functional purposes and for practical purposes, to the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. The Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion (VCDI), as a member of the Journey Co-Leaders team, holds an ex-officio role on the team and functions as the coordinator of the work of the team. The executive assistant for VCDI provides administrative support to the team and liaises with operational units.
- The Co-Leaders are able to communicate with any entity within the university in an official capacity, as an autonomous team.
- The Co-Leaders work by consensus in all its dealings that lead to actions and recommendations.